When it was launched in 1979, the Piaget Polo was quite unlike anything on the market at the time. With a bracelet that seamlessly swelled into the watch face, and horizontal ridges slicing across the entire timepiece, it was a bold statement created to answer the people’s desire for a more relaxed form of elegance.
Yves G Piaget, the man behind this design, called it a “watch bracelet rather than a mere wristwatch”. Seeing as the entire thing was solid yellow gold and wondrously slim — thanks to the highly regarded 7P quartz movement, one of the thinnest at the time — it was an apt description and a solid contender during the burgeoning trend of luxury sports watches.
As the first watch Piaget created to meet demand, it also became the first to be given a proper name. “We soon began gravitating around the world of polo,” Yves said regarding the collection’s naming. “We were exactly on target, in a world combining luxury and sport. What’s more, polo also matched our identity in technical terms. It’s a high-precision sport that calls for anticipating the next move, mastering time and displaying consistent elegance.”
Piaget delivered all of that on the horological front, updating the Polo’s design and upgrading its technical capabilities as the decades passed, all while retaining its identity as an everyday watch with surprising refinement.
One of the more significant facelifts was applied to the Polo in 2001, when the integrated bracelet took on more pronounced edges, and the horizontal stripes disappeared from the watch face. Complications like chronographs and tourbillons were also introduced to the line. In 2009, on the 30th anniversary of the collection, it was redesigned again, returning to its more curvaceous form and sporting titanium — a first for the brand. At 45mm, it was the most masculine interpretation of the Polo thus far.
Piaget continued to evolve one of its most popular watches with the times and in 2016, it responded to modern inclinations with the release of the Polo S. With its steel case, matching steel bracelet, shape-in-shape design and striped dial, the 42mm Polo S was an immediate hit among those looking for a timepiece that was simple yet striking, and versatile enough for any occasion.
The Piaget Polo’s success in this category has logically skewed it toward men for most of its history, but Piaget has recently introduced the Piaget Polo Date 36mm. Finally, a casual, sporty-chic option for women.
These watches bear horizontal guilloche dials, skeletonised dauphine hands, date at six o’clock and diamond-set indexes — elements that are heavily reminiscent of the Polo S, but delicately dolled-up for feminine sensibilities. On that note, all references except for the high-jewellery timepiece come with interchangeable straps, with steel or gold bracelet options also available.
The Calibre 501P is slim (just 3.6mm to be exact), which is to be expected from the master of ultra-thin. The self-winding movement and its circular Cotes de Geneve, circular-grained mainplate, bevelled bridges and blued screws can be admired through the transparent case back.
The collection debuts with six references: two in steel, two in rose gold, and two in white gold fully paved with diamonds. Only one model, in full steel with a “Piaget blue” dial, has an unadorned bezel. In stark contrast to that is the high-jewellery reference boasting a total of 1,700 brilliant-cut diamonds (approximately 7.89 cts) across the dial, case, crown and bracelet.
With the new Polo Date 36mm, Piaget offers women the sweet spot between its more glamorous Limelight Gala watches and the classically round Altiplano collection — basically, the ultimate watch for the woman on the go.